Tamriel : The Fourth Era
Vampire Clans of Tamriel
The vampires of Tamriel are commonly grouped by their territory and “bloodline”. A vampire’s bloodline is determined by the vampire who infected it, which in turn affects its abilities. Some vampires have created clans according to bloodline and territory. These clans normally consist of vampires of the same bloodline, or who share the same feeding grounds. Some clans are powerful enough to have established strongholds and regularly feed off captured “cattle”: prisoners, or thralls, who they feed off of regularly without turning them into vampires.
Lamae Beolfag was the first of her kind but like her successors, she created a bloodline. Vampires of this particular bloodline have Noxiphilic Sanguivoria rather than Porphyric Hemophilia or Sanguinare Vampiris, as a consequence these Vampires do not burn or weaken in sun but rather become more powerful once night falls, they have their own set of abilities as well some shared by other bloodlines such as invisibility. The spreading of vampirism among this clan is unique as it requires a blood transference between victim and vampire and then a ritual known as the “Rite of Scion” in which Lamae herself appears and finishes the process. The exact name of this bloodline is unknown but they were extremely common in the second era and were not limited to any particular areas as they could be encountered nearly all over Tamriel. These vampires don’t worship Molog Bal but rather they hate him, this is in accordance with Lamae’s will, having new recruits profane symbols of Molag Bal is part of the rite of scion ritual. while its not odd for vampires to not worship him, it is unusual for a whole bloodline to hate the ultimate source of their condition.
The Whet-Fang vampires of Black Marsh are known to capture victims alive and keep them in a magicka-induced coma, allowing the vampires to extract blood at their own leisure. The Order vampires of Cyrodiil believe the Whet-Fang vampires to show “signs of enlightenments”, regarding them as more intelligent than the other “barbaric” tribes. For this reason, the Order considers them a possible threat to their dominance in Cyrodiil.
Only one known tribe exists in Cyrodiil; they are experts of concealment, and their true name has been lost to history. Much like the Imperials, they ousted their competition. Indistinguishable from the living if well-fed, these Cyrodiilic Vampires are cultured and more civilized than vampires of other provinces, using their stealthy abilities to feed on the sleeping and unaware. Calling themselves the Order, these vampires follow the Daedric Prince “Kin-father” Molag Bal, like many other vampires, but they also consider Clavicus Vile their patron. Members are bound never to reveal themselves or the Order, and to procure power, stature, and wealth whenever possible.
The Iliac Bay region hosts nine bloodlines of vampires, each with their own special abilities: the Anthotis, Garlythi, Haarvenu, Khulari, Lyrezi, Montalion, Selenu, Thrafey, and Vraseth. The clans inhabit their own regions, and a strong sense of rivalry is present. At least some vampires, however, became soldiers in an army of undead which ruled over the Barony of Dwynnen around 3E 253.
The Glenmoril Wyrd vampires live in the Breton cities of High Rock, though no information about their abilities or feeding habits is known. It is known, however, that they are one of the tribes considered more intelligent (and threatening) by the Order vampires of Cyrodiil; possibly implying that, like the Order, they live disguised among the normal population as stealthy manipulators.
The Dunmer are strongly opposed to any form of necromancy, thus vampires are largely unknown in their land of Morrowind. The Tribunal Temple has some control over the public knowledge of vampires, but cannot keep it completely unknown. In the past, Ordinators and Buoyant Armigers were in charge of eradicating vampires, leading to their supposed extinction. Thus, the hunting orders that exist in the western Tamriel are unknown.
The vampires of Morrowind are typically in one of three bloodlines, which differ in accordance to their “approach to prey”. The Quarra are aggressive and fierce when it comes to hunting, while the Berne clan prefer a stealthier approach. The Aundae bloodline consist of vampiric mages, who use the dark powers associated with vampirism to entrap prey. These vampires not only have their own strongholds, but are also dispersed amongst the Daedric shrines and abandoned Dunmer and Dwemer strongholds. Ironically, these clans show great hostility to new-born vampires, considering them abominations as their living counterparts do.
In the Red Mountain, the Ash Vampire was an immortal magical being of vast power. They were close kin and loyal lieutenants of Dagoth Ur, and thus partook of his supernatural vitality, but they were not related to true vampires – in fact, they are not even undead. Near the end of the Third Era, the number of vampires began to rise in Morrowind, leading to renewed calls to exterminate them.
The Volkihar vampires of eastern Skyrim live under haunted, frozen lakes and only leave their dens to feed. They have the power to freeze their victims with icy breath, and can reach through the ice of their frozen lake dens without breaking it They are the earliest known vampire coven in Tamriel. The Volkihar vampires are relatively similar in appearance to those of Cyrodiil and they share some similar powers such as night vision, the ability to turn invisible and the ability to seduce others. Certain Volkihar vampires however appear more monstrous than their Cyrodiilic counterparts- some of them have large brow ridges, slits running through their lips, and bat-like noses, and they have powers which aren’t shared by the vampires of Cyrodiil—they can reanimate dead bodies and do not burn when in sunlight (although they are weakened by it). The Volkihar have been known to employ Death Hounds as guardians.
Some of the more ancient Volkihar vampires such as those of the court at Castle Volkihar are pure-blooded and can even transform themselves into a more monstrous form: the large, winged Vampire Lords which were blessed by Molag Bal himself. This gift grants further powers such as the ability to summon gargoyles. It is said that Potema, the Wolf Queen, relied upon vampiric generals in the latter days of the War of the Red Diamond.
The Tsaesci are the “vampiric Serpent Folk” native to Akavir who, according to legend, long ago ate all the men of that land. It is unknown if their reputation as “vampire snakes” is literal or metaphorical, though like conventional vampires, they are purportedly immortal.
In northern Valenwood, there are the Bonsamu vampires which are indistinguishable from normal Bosmer unless seen by candlelight, the Keerilth who can disintegrate into mist, the Yekef who swallow men whole, and the Telboth who prey on children, take their place in the family, and eventually murder all of the family members.